No setback for Woodley

Linebacker LaMarr Woodley saw limited action against the Bengals on Sunday, but could still start Thursday night against the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field.

Woodley missed the previous three games with a hamstring injury but gave it a shot against the Bengals. He left the game in the first quarter, but Coach Mike Tomlin would not call it a setback.

"I don't know if you want to characterize it as a setback at this point," said Tomlin during his weekly press conference on Monday. "I think that the week will provide that legitimate information for us.

"Obviously, he felt something, and he was mature enough to not do any further damage to it. We appreciate that. We will see if that provides an opportunity for us to put him in play this week."

Tomlin did say the plan going into the Bengals games was to limit Woodley's playing time to allow him to work his way back gradually and having Jason Worilds playing strong allowed that to happen.

"Certainly, he was going to be on a pitch count," said Tomlin. "He didn't log enough time for that to become an issue. But that's generally the case when you are talking about a guy coming off of an injury, whether it's LaMarr Woodley or anyone, particularly when the guys that are replacing them have played as solid as Jason Worilds has.

"There was going to be a pitch count. It didn't come to that. I gave you the information I had in regards to the thought process of pulling him out of the game and letting him remain out of the game."

With a short week ahead Tomlin already expects receiver Arnaz Battle (hamstring) and linebacker Chris Carter (hamstring) to likely miss Thursday's game. He is more optimistic about getting linebacker Larry Foote back on the field after he missed Sunday's game against the Bengals with a hamstring injury.

Guard Ramon Foster, who left the Bengals game with a sprained left ankle, is questionable at this point but has not been ruled out from playing this week.

"I am not ready to consider that Ramon isn't playing," said Tomlin. "We will see where the week takes us."

Both Chris Hoke (neck) and Jonathan Dwyer (foot) were scheduled to see the doctor on Monday.


While the Steelers had a few hours to enjoy their 35-7 win over the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, on Monday it was time to start preparing for the Cleveland Browns.

The players had the day off, but for the coaches there was no rest for the weary.

"We have a lot of work to do in a short period of time," said Tomlin. "We understand the significance of this game and all the elements at play. We are comfortable with our schedule and our plan.

"But being comfortable is just part of it. We have to execute it, live it, and ultimately, step into Heinz Field and deliver Thursday night and put together a winning performance."


The Steelers know the Browns have multiple weapons they will have to look out for, but one who has done his share of damage against them in the past is Joshua Cribbs, particularly in the return game.

"On special teams, they are really solid," said Tomlin. "We can't let Josh Cribbs do what he's done to us time and time again in the past. We've been dead Indians in his cowboy movie enough. This guy is a talented guy. It starts there for us, talking about special teams not letting him inflict harm on us via the kickoff or punt return."

Like many teams the Steelers will float around the idea of not kicking to Cribbs.

"Those are things we need to consider, particularly when you start talking about weather," said Tomlin. "I haven't looked at the weather forecast for Thursday night but if wind is an issue, along with his skill set, those are some of the things you consider, not only in punt returns but in kick returns."

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